One rough stretch for Worley proves costly in 4-0 loss to Hammel, Cubs


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CHICAGO — Pittsburgh Pirates starter Vance Worley was pretty good for most of his start against the Chicago Cubs.

His one rough patch cost him.

Chicago scored three times in the third after Worley retired the first two batters, and that was more than enough for Jason Hammel to pitch the Cubs to a 4-0 victory on Monday night.

"I made some good pitches and they put them where they weren't," Worley said. "It was pretty simple."

Pittsburgh had won five in a row.

Worley (2-2) allowed four runs and nine hits in six innings. He struck out three and walked one.

The third inning began with a popup by Hammel and a groundout for Addison Russell. Then Dexter Fowler walked, Jorge Soler singled, Anthony Rizzo hit an RBI double and Kris Bryant singled for a 3-0 lead.

The Pirates finished with four hits. Neil Walker extended his hitting streak to 10 games, but Pittsburgh didn't mount much of an attack. Hammel (2-1) struck out seven and walked none in eight innings.

"He was on top of his game today," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

Bryant got two hits as the Cubs won their third in a row. The prized rookie has nine RBIs in 10 games since being called up from the minors.

"He is a big kid with a good swing that looks like he is going to have every opportunity to be a qualified major league player," Hurdle said. "I'll let him write the story."

Rizzo also got two hits and drove in two runs. Soler, who began the day in an 0-for-15 slump, and Fowler each added two hits as Chicago moved four games above .500 at 11-7.

"I'm looking forward to throwing against them again," Worley said.

Russell got a hit and scored a run in his Wrigley Field debut. He also lost control of his bat in the seventh inning and it flew into the stands, injuring a fan.

The fan was carried from the stands on a stretcher. The Cubs issued a statement saying the fan was "conscious and communicating with staff while being transported from the stands."

"I felt so bad. Words can't describe how bad I feel," Russell said. "I found the bat in my locker, so if you see that guy out there I'm willing to give him a bat and sign it and everything. I just feel terribly bad about that."


Pittsburgh star Andrew McCutchen went 0 for 4 and his batting average dropped to .175, but Hurdle didn't sound too worried about the 2013 NL MVP.

"He continues to go out there and work. He was out hitting early again today, he was hitting early in Arizona so he's diligent," Hurdle said. "He's being very professional about his approach, trying to be stubborn with it and I think he's getting very, very close."


The Pirates were making their first visit to a work-in progress Wrigley Field. Hurdle said the stadium is "in transition" but seems to think the work will be worth it.

"You've got to be a visionary, but I think it's going to be really cool looking when they finish," Hurdle said.


Pirates: OF Gregory Polanco was a late scratch because of a tight left groin. Andrew Lambo took his spot in the lineup.

Cubs: Maddon said RHP Justin Grimm (right forearm inflammation) had been doing better, but hadn't heard anything Monday.


Pittsburgh LHP Jeff Locke (2-0, 3.32 ERA) faces Chicago LHP Travis Wood (1-1, 3.24). Wood has struggled badly against the Pirates at Wrigley Field, going 0-5 with a 5.28 ERA in six starts.

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